OSA | Living History

Serge Lowenthal

OSA Awards & Distinctions



Serge Lowenthal was born in Germany, and was a Jewish refugee in France during the nazi period. Lowenthal joined the French resistance during World War II before entering Ecole Superieure d'Optique in Paris. He worked as a research engineer from 1950-1968 and then joined the university to become a professor and a research group leader at Institut d'Optique, Orsay. He remained there until his death in 1998.

He is known as one of the pioneers of Coherent Optics in the 1960s after the advent of the laser, and as one of the pioneers of Coherent X-ray Optics in the 1980ies after the advent of high luminance sources in the soft X-ray range. He also contributed to optical information processing, speckle, and inverse problems in imaging. He served as president of the International Commission for Optics from 1984-1987. He was elected a Fellow of OSA in 1973. In 1995, he received the C.E.K. Mees Medal “For numerous major and significant contributions to optics, especially in x-ray imaging, holography, and optical information processing and of his continuous, energetic, and tireless pursuit of the goal of international cooperation.”



Document Created: 11 Jun 2020
Last Updated: 30 Jul 2020